Elections, daylight saving hours, Uzaki-chan figurines! A million controversies pervade us through the internet, but being kind and civil bloggers with a limited tolerance for unproductive arguments, most of us don’t go around poking the bears.
Still, I know there are lots of things that people want to talk about despite their reservations, and I for one really want to read those things! That controversial anime stances post idea that’s been going around is pretty awesome (sharing Aria‘s post as an example); maybe we can push that further. Hence, this month-long project – “#Controversed,” for “well-versed in controversy.”
I’m going to venture to say that my blog isn’t among the first anyone would think of when you hear the word “controversial” (though that may change after this month, hoho). I am hardly an authority at controversial subjects, but then again, you certainly don’t need to show your credentials to have a say on something, and that’s what this event is all about.
A quote by psychologist Dr. Steven Pinker from his lecture for the Sterling Prize in Support of Controversy:
“I have many ideas, and surely, some of them ought to be wrong. But because I don’t know which ones they are, I must keep on defending them.”
I was lucky to attend the live lecture, and man was Dr. Pinker an amazing speaker! The full recording is on YouTube if anyone’s interested; I highly recommend it (here). The gist is that we’re socially primed to be wary of controversies in favour of preserving harmony, but sometimes not speaking about something you have opinions on harms the culture of the community more, on top of stalling your own progress of ideas.
This month, I invite you to join me in speaking your mind on something – anything! Be it a pertinent world issue or your secret anime pet peeve. Hopefully, we can come together to make a safe and healthy atmosphere for good criticism.
I called it a “workshop,” but it’s perhaps more of an open event that hopes to incite some discussion. Every Monday, I will put out at least one post under the theme of controversy/criticism, and there will be prompts that you can pick up if you’re in the mood for writing. To participate in the event, simply create one piece (blog post, video, any other thought piece) of any length that responds to one of the general prompts before noon of November 29. Please link to this post or any of my later Controversed posts so that I know.
If you use Twitter, please add the hashtag #controversed to the Tweet associated with the post, and feel free to use the hashtag liberally for any relevant content. If you dare, I challenge you to hashtag the next heated Twitter debate that you accidentally get into. I’m sure we can use some fun checking it out, haha.
I’ll put out a special showcase for all contributions to this theme here on the blog on Monday, November 30.
Join on Discord!
Jon Spencer @ Jon Spencer Reviews, whom you may know from the Jon Spencer Showcase AND who runs an awesome Discord server with exciting monthly events, has graciously allowed me to host Controversed as the November event!
If you’re interested in having live discussions or putting out your pieces for some feedback, or if you just want to make some friends and have a fun time, feel free to join us on Discord! Upon completion of the event, you will receive a special title in the Discord server to mark your participation. 😉
To participate in the event on Discord, join Jon’s Discord server here.
Week 1 Prompts
- What is a controversy in the (anime/manga/other) community that bothers you, and why?
- What do you think of controversies? Do you consider yourself or your blog controversial to any degree?
These are just prompts to hopefully open the floodgates a little, so feel free to interpret them as loosely as you like! Again, your participation will be counted and featured as long as you interact with at least one discussion of the week before November 29 (so you can still be responding to a Week 1 prompt on November 28).
In addition, if you have any other thoughts on controversies or critical writing, feel free to quote this post and use the hashtag (#controversed), and depending on the specific subject, I’ll probably be happy to feature it in the final showcase too!
This workshop is open to everyone, so you don’t have to be a fan of anime/manga at all to contribute your piece. And if you don’t feel like writing so much or don’t have a blog, tweets and comments are as appreciated as always. Thank you for reading, and Happy November!